Becker Friedman Institute
for Research in Economics
The University of Chicago

Research. Insights. Impact. Advancing the Legacy of Chicago Economics.

Tomas Philipson

Daniel Levin Professor of Public Policy
University of Chicago Harris School of Public Policy

Tomas Philipson is the director of the Health Economics Initiative at the Becker Friedman Institute.

In addition to his faculty position at University of Chicago Harris, Philipson is an associate member of the Department of Economics and a former senior lecturer at the Law School. His research focuses on health economics, and he teaches Masters and PhD courses in microeconomics and health economics at the University.

Philipson has served in several public sector positions. He served in the second Bush Administration as the senior economic advisor to the head of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) during 2003–04 and subsequently as the senior economic advisor to the head of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) in 2004–05. He served as a senior health care advisor to Senator John McCain during his 2008 campaign for President of the United States. In December 2010, he was appointed by the Speaker of the US House of Representatives to the Key Indicator Commission created by the recent health care reform.

Philipson has twice received the Kenneth Arrow Award of the International Health Economics Association for best paper in the field of health economics. In addition, he was awarded the Garfield Award by Research America in 2007 (for best paper in the field of health economics) and the Distinguished Economic Research Award from the Milken Institute in 2003 (for best paper in any field of economics). He is a founding editor of the journal Forums for Health Economics & Policy of Berkeley Electronic Press and has been on the editorial board of the journal Health Economics and The European Journal of Health Economics.

Philipson is a fellow, board member, or associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research, the American Enterprise Institute, the Manhattan Institute (where he is chairman of Project FDA), the Heartland Institute, the Milken Institute, the RAND Corporation, and the USC Shaeffer Center for Health Economics and Policy. He has consulted for both private corporations, including many U.S. Fortune 100 companies, as well as government organizations domestically and internationally.

Philipson obtained his undergraduate degree in mathematics at Uppsala University. He received his MA and PhD in economics from the Wharton School and the University of Pennsylvania. He was a visiting faculty member at Yale University in the academic year 1994-95 and a visiting fellow at the World Bank in the winter of 2003.